I previously mentioned that one day this turkey flock appeared on the ranch–and they haven’t left for two years. These crafty birds follow the sheep herd around all day–and even sleep in the trees that surround their main pasture.
These savvy creatures are definitely survivors. One hen was killed by a passing eagle, and a couple fell victim to roaming predators — not sure if it was a fox, coyote or bobcat. Besides those casualties, their flock has doubled and some of the birds even departed to my neighbors ranch. One day I spotted their two cats sitting on their deck surrounded by the traveling turkey flock.
The dozen birds that remain here, escort my 50+ sheep and act like loyal LGDs. Yes, the turkeys are as good as any livestock guardian dog I’ve ever had–maybe better in some regards. They are very weary and stay on-duty 24 hours a day. Their loud predator-warnings send the sheep scurrying for protection, and me grabbing for the closest rifle. The last two coyote kills were thanks to these turkeys–who gobbled out the alert.